….For Killings Its 2016 Corruption Campaign Strategy Against John Mahama
The opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) is up in arms, desperately fighting the widely and internationally respected Transparency International (TI), over its latest report on the Corruption Perception Index released last week, ranking Ghana 56th out of 168 countries, with a score of 47; one of the best scores in recent years.
The NPP described as “dubious” attempts by the Mahama-led administration, to portray a recent corruption report to mean that Ghana performed better in the fight against corruption.
The NPP, its flagbearer, Nana Akufo-Addo, running mate, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, and spokespersons, including Nana Akomea, have made “corruption” their biggest campaign message against the John Mahama government, but the TI figures, showing slight improvement in the fight against corruption by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) government, appears to have doused that campaign message.
“The NDC government has sought to take some solace from the 2015 Transparency International report on corruption. This attempt amounts to a fantasy, a mere fiddling while Ghana burns from corruption and a poor attempt by President Mahama’s government to tickle itself and laugh. One basis for the government’s fantasy is that it had placed 56 out of 168 countries and placed 7th in Africa”.
Indeed, Transparency International, further singled out Ghana, and some African countries to have inched up in the fight against corruption in the sub-region. Ghana and Senegal, were commended as countries in the West African sub-region, which were impressive last year, compared to previous year.
But the NPP, argued in a statement signed by its Director of Communications, Nana Akomea, that this could not be true in the wake of the many corruption scandals that has hit the Mahama-led administration citing, “GYEEDA, Woyome, SADA, Subah, Waterville and recently Smarttys bus rebranding saga.”
The NPP claimed that, the figure in the corruption perception index, showed that Ghana dropped as compared to figures from previous years.
Nana Akomea’s statement said, “one basis for the government’s fantasy is that it had placed 56 out of 168 countries and placed 7th in Africa. But the government is not able to say if these positions amount to improvement, or not. In 2008, Ghana ranked 67 but out of a bigger sample of 180 countries. Is 56th position out of 167 countries in 2015 better or worse than 67th position out of 180 countries in 2008? The stark reality is that Ghana actually dropped from a score of 48 out of 100 in 2014, to a score of 47 out of 100 in 2015,” the statement added.
He said, attempts to portray the country as one that is making positive impact in the fight against corruption “amounts to a fantasy, a mere fiddling while Ghana burns from corruption and a poor attempt by President Mahama’s government to tickle itself and laugh.”
The NPP further stated that, anti-corruption campaigners, including investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas, Martin Amid and Occupy Ghana, should rather be commended for fighting against shady activities in the country.
“Government also seems happy about its claim that Ghana and Senegal have been mentioned as making progress in the fight against corruption in Africa. This claim is also dubious. Ghana was mentioned in terms of increased civil society and individual’s activism in anti-corruption activities. This has nothing to do with government. The credit for this belongs to civil activists like Occupy Ghana and Lmani Ghana and to individuals such as Martin Amidu and Anas Aremeyaw Anas,” he added.
Government, had earlier responded to the Transparency International report saying it “has taken note of the latest report of the Corruption Perception Index launched earlier today. The report ranks Ghana 56th out of 168 countries with a score of 47”.
It said “We acknowledge the singling out of Ghana and Senegal for praise in the report on efforts made by the respective governments on one hand and social partners on the other to combat the menace. This report, arguably the most authoritative source of corruption surveys in the world, belies the spurious claims of certain media outlets a few months ago that Ghana had been ranked as the second most corrupt nation in Africa by Transparency International”.
The government statement signed by Communications Minister said “we note that though this performance is one point lower than that of 2014, it can be viewed within the context of the general performance of all countries. Ghana ranks 7th in Africa which means that apart from six African countries we performed better than all other countries on the continent and 112 countries worldwide”.
According to Dr. Edward Omane Boamah’s statement, “given that this is a perception survey, it stands to reason that the views expressed by respondents were based on perceptions about the subject in the year under review. It also stands to reason therefore that the intense media focus on the allegations of corruption in the Judiciary as well as the repetition of some obviously false allegations against government in 2015 contributed to the perception”.
It added that, “we are also mindful of the “paradox of exposure”- which creates a scenario where government’s efforts to expose and punish acts of wrongdoing such as the National Service Case, generates discussions among the populace creating a misleading impression of pervasive corruption when the opposite is in fact the case”.
“We nonetheless commit and rededicate ourselves to the implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Action Plan (NACAP). We shall continue to strengthen the relevant state institutions and work with Civil Society to win the war against corruption. We commend all stakeholders who have genuinely contributed to this enviable feat as proclaimed by Transparency International”.
President John Mahama, had also said, Ghana has more work to do to eradicate corruption, despite the improvement in the latest corruption index rankings by TI.
According to him, Ghana’s performance in the latest rankings, is an indication that the country is on the right path in its fight against the canker.
Commenting on the Transparency International report, the President wrote on his Facebook wall that, his government was committed towards winning the fight against corruption.
“Ghana today is perceived as less corrupt than important countries like Italy, Greece, Brazil or China. More importantly, Ghana, is one of the least corrupt countries in Africa.
“Of course, we all know that we still have a lot to do when it comes to fighting corruption. All of us, not only the Government, should be more involved in this fight,” Mahama wrote, adding, “without a doubt, Ghana’s results clearly show that, we’re on the right path. For this, I thank all of you. God bless you! God bless our Mother Ghana!